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Gradius Wiki

Beacon (ビーコン Bīkon?) is a boss in Gradius III and Gradius V.

Attack patterns

Gradius III

The boss of Stage 7, Beacon simply moves up and down the screen and shoots four lasers and bouncing cores. In spite of the large number of cores, Beacon is perhaps the quickest boss to defeat in the entire game. It's only really a threat if the player is underpowered.

Gradius V

In this game, Beacon is the first boss of Stage 7 and has many more attacks, thus being much more difficult. Instead of shooting lasers, Beacon charges up and releases four laser streams. In addition to this, the bouncing cores are replaced by reflecting lasers that semi-aim in your direction. There's also another phase where it will shoot many bullets in a haphazard stream (two streams if only one core remains) while releasing fire bombs up and down, which trail along the ceiling/floor. These bombs will restrict your movement to the center. Its fifth and final core can only be hit after the initial frontal four have been destroyed.



  • Beacon used to hold the title for most cores on a ship (five).
  • One of Beacon's attacks from Gradius III is based on the destructible orb attack used by ZCS from Thunder Force II.
  • The bombs the Beacon drops in Gradius V is similar to Snake, one of Rynex's weapons, from Thunder Force IV.
Gradius III
Ships Vic Viper
Stages DesertBubble ZoneVolcanic PlanetHigh Speed DimensionMoai ZoneCell PlanetProminence PlanetPlant PlanetCrystal ZoneBoss RushMechanical Base
SNES exclusive stages High Speed ZoneFortressCell
Bosses GoliathBubble EyeGodreiBig Core MK IIIDogasVaifTwin Vaif (SNES) • GregolWyvernVulture DragonChoking WeedLizard CoreBeacon (SNES) • TetranCovered CoreBig Core MK IICrystal CoreDeath MK IIDellinger CoreDisruptShadow GearShadow Gear MK II (SNES) • Big CoreGolemBacterian
Gradius V
Ships Vic Viper T-301
Stages Planet Gradius Satellite OrbitPlanet Gradius City Sky APlanet Gradius Urban Underground HierarchyBacterian Cell CenterAsteroid Front BaseBacterian Multiplication PlantBacterian Fortification CenterPlanet Gradius City Sky B
Bosses Big Core MK-I Rev.2Venom (lower) • Death MK IIITetranBig Core MK IIBig Core MK IVGround SpiderHuge HeartBlaster Cannon CoreRolling CoreCircle CoreBig Core MK IIICovered Core MK IIBeaconKeeper's CoreElephant GearVenom (upper)
Core Warships
Big Cores Big Core MK IBig Core CustomBig Core MK-I Rev.2Big Core MK IIBig Core MK II KaiBig Core MK IIIBig Core MK IV
Big Core variants BeaconBig Core DuoBlaster Cannon CoreBubble CoreCircle CoreCoreshipCrater CoreCrystal CoreDellinger CoreDesert CoreHeaven's GateJuggler CoreLaser CoreLizard CoreNeo Big CorePerla MeraldaRexion CoreRolling CoreShining CoreSuper Big CoreTerra CoreVanishing CoreGenocide CoreOdin Core
Core-style bosses Abaddon WarshipCovered CoreCovered Core MK IIDead EndKrakenMayhem WarshipMetal SlaveMisfit WarshipQueensrÿcheRiot WarshipPlate Core
Pseudo-Cores DeathDeath MK II (DeathDouble) • Death MK IIIBeta CoreNobilTriple CoreCrash Bam
Tetran variants Tetran (Zylom) • Covered TetranCrystal Core D-X02Laser TetranTenny Rop
Parody Cores Candy CoreDecoration CoreDecoration Core MK IIViva Core